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FBI's Intellectual Propety Theft web site

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  • Ray Merriam
    I always wondered if the warning you see on DVD videos was only for such items. Not true. Although that s where you see it most often and it can be seen on
    Message 1 of 1 , Jan 16, 2012
      I always wondered if the warning you see on DVD videos was only for such items. Not true. Although that's where you see it most often and it can be seen on other items such as video games and music, almost anything that's copyrighted can use the warning, if not the seal. Use of the seal requires a licensing agreement with the FBI. But use of the warning language can be used without prior approval or a licensing agreement.
      So I will begin using that on any PDFs or other electronic versions of any books and publications I produce. It will be the first page everyone sees when they open a PDF or other electronic version of publications by the Merriam Press, and I may consider putting it in the printed books.
      As for the PDFs of old manuals and such, I will come up with some text that will advise people the PDF they are viewing was produced by Merriam Press and if they got it from any other source but Merriam Press (or Lulu) they have an unauthorized copy produced by someone else and it could contain malware or worse (probably not, but give 'em a good scare - software companies always use that tactic).
      And all PDFs will be password protected so that they cannot remove anything (such as the warning) or add anything, nor copy material from the PDF such as images or portions of the text, nor print the file of the books I publish (I will allow them to print copies of the old manuals and such unless I have produced a facsimile printed version which I am doing in some cases). That doesn't stop them from copying the entire PDF file, but they won't be able to alter it or extract materials from it.
      The eBooks have DRM (Digital Rights Management), which I pay extra for (25 cents for each eBook download). Those have to be downloaded from approved sites. I have produced about a half dozen titles in that format and will do most of the books I have published as eBooks, and they can only be sold through Lulu, the Apple iPad store and the B&N Nook store. Although others may be added in the future. I hope to do Kindle versions sometime, but producing an eBook in Kindle format is more difficult. Amazon doesn't provide any sort of easy do-it-yourself type of one-shot online conversion like Lulu does, and the Lulu version does not work on Kindles, but will work on many other eReaders, as well as any computer.

      Anti-Piracy Warning Seal


      The graphic you see on this page—the FBI’s Anti-Piracy Warning Seal—was specifically created to deter illegal practice and to increase public awareness of the penalties associated with piracy.

      Why? Because piracy of media and other commercial goods causes huge losses to the U.S. economy each year…and it’s American consumers who are paying the price.

      Where will the seal (and all statements that say “FBI Anti-Piracy Warning”) appear? On a lot of different kinds of goods…subject to the terms of licensing agreements. But right now, we’re just getting started.

      Since August 2006, the FBI has authorized use of the FBI Anti-Piracy seal and warning by members of the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA), the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA), the Software & Information Industry Association (SIIA), the Business Software Alliance (BSA) and the Entertainment Software Association (ESA), subject to each member entering into a formal Uniform Authorization Agreement. Association members should contact the MPAA, RIAA, SIIA, BSA, or ESA for more information.

      We are evaluating the licensing arrangements we have with members of these associations with a view towards permitting the broadest possible public use of the seal by all individuals and businesses with a copyright interest.

      In the meantime, it is perfectly fine for anyone, without FBI approval, to use the following generic language on material protected under U.S. copyright law: “Warning: The unauthorized reproduction or distribution of this copyrighted work is illegal. Criminal copyright infringement, including infringement without monetary gain, is investigated by the FBI and is punishable by up to five years in federal prison and a fine of $250,000.”

      A last word to the wise: Unauthorized use of the FBI seal, name, and initials are subject to prosecution under Federal Criminal law, including Sections 701, 709, and 712 of Title 18 of the United States Code. Also read about “Fair Use Warnings” accompanied by the FBI seal that have been posted on various websites, giving the false appearance that the FBI has created or authorized these notices to advise the public about  the fair use doctrine in U.S. copyright law.

      Above from:
      Home page of the FBI's Intellectual Property Theft web site:
      Some interesting links to stories and information there.
      Then there's the Stopfakes.gov web site:
      And to report theft of Intellectual property, go to this web site, the National Intellectual Property Rights Coordination Center (IPR Center):
      One of my contacts who received my earlier message about the G/K 43 Forum Digital Store told me that he has found portions of two of his books being offered for free at a web site and when he contacted the person who uploaded, he basically blew him off. So he tried contacting the site owners, and they are making him jump through hoops, but that's probably just them being careful legally. This is where having your material copyrighted in your own name really works for you.
      And here's the U.S. Copyright Office's take on such things, who basically say that they cannot enforce the law it administers, which is a civil matter and the owner must pursue it in federal court. But most people don't know about the laws on this and think they can do as they please. Just advising them of the laws and the potential for serious legal action will get most people to stop their nefarious activities:
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